At the beginning of the month, the improved version of Interplanetary was released. Entitled Enhanced Edition, the game offers new features:
- improved visuals and sounds
- the ability to add AI to online matches
- new balances for current players
- new buildings and weapons, including a new super weapon
- quick targeting mode
- new spy mechanisms, making the spy system more efficient and easy to understand
- multiplayer improvements via various feature enhancements
Interplanetary takes us on a race for galactic supremacy in a turn-based game where the goal is to destroy the cities of enemy planets to take control of the solar system. Fortunately, a tutorial gives the basics to fully understand. And it is better to read everything because the grip is not necessarily very obvious at first glance as there are parameters to take into account.
The game screen is presented in 5 modes:
- overview: this view gives a general overview of the solar system, with a preview of the different planets and the location of enemies.
- build: the camera zooms in on our planet, making it possible to create buildings, military or civilian, to recover resources or defend themselves.
- intel: what would war be without espionage? When investigating the enemy, information is displayed on the enemy planet (s) in this view such as the location of cities and buildings. And conversely, it is also possible to make your own planet less vulnerable to enemy investigations.
- targeting: when it's time to get down to business! Each shot is defined according to its angle of fire and the initial velocity.
- tech: a tech tree unlocks a whole tree of various upgrades, new buildings, city projects and weapons, each more deadly than the next.
All important city information is summarized at the top left of the screen. Each green square represents a city, with its population of small characters which fill up as the evolution progresses and the rectangles symbolizing the projects in progress. Below are indicated energy and materials, the energy bar being linked to the planet icon whose appearance represents the amount of resources remaining to be extracted.
Cities and buildings
Once all the cities are destroyed, the game is over, they are the most precious asset, to protect and to prosper at all costs. To attract people, a city can be linked to another more populated city, protected by defensive buildings, or benefit from specific projects. The larger the city, the more projects or connectors it will have. Cities are also important sources of science (to be used in the tech tree), materials and energy, although it is necessary for their proper functioning to always connect them to power plants (Power Plant).
There are many buildings to build, the first and most important being undoubtedly the Power Plant already mentioned above which will supply energy to the cities, but also all of the other buildings, such as the offensive turrets, the mines ...
Different interactions are available on buildings: resale (to recover some of the materials), repair, reconnection (to link it to others), disconnection and improvement. The improvement is important to increase the amount of collected resources or statistics.
Energy is essential, it is one of the two resources without which it is not possible to progress. It is created each turn by power plants and cities, then used in most in-game actions: constructing buildings, upgrading buildings, city projects, firing weapons, activating defenses military ... It is important to maximize its use because it does not stack turn after turn, and will therefore be lost if not used.
On the contrary, materials accumulate and can therefore be harvested, then patiently saved for the biggest expenses. Created in mines and towns, they are used for constructions, town projects and building improvements. Note that each planet has only a limited amount of materials and regenerates less materials than produced, inevitably leading to an end of the supply, sooner or later.
Course of a tour
Each turn, resources are generated (including population in cities), buildings are constructed or upgraded, projects started, research done, and conflicts are resolved. All the selected weapons fire at the same time during the action phase, the events being taken in a log where a color code simplifies the reading: red = negative, blue = neutral, green = positive.
Weapons require a real sense of geometry, taking into account the angle of fire, but also the velocity. Thus, the placement of the weapon on the planet will condition the areas that can be hit, asking to estimate the right trajectory to hit the target.
When artillery is very important, the new fast targeting mode gives the opportunity to fire at the same time with several weapons.
Rather complex, the interface is a bit frustrating to load, offering only written non-interactive guides, unlike most games on the market today which have made a habit of using information bubbles. Even if they are not very pretty, the guides integrated into the game nevertheless give valuable information very useful to fully understand the mechanics for any player who will make the effort to read.
If you manage to go beyond that, you'll experience a rich, layered management game featuring epic galactic battles. The presence of an artificial intelligence makes it possible to train offline, the game will of course take all its interest in the online mode where you can compete with your friends with or without the presence of AI.
In the end, therefore, an excellent real-time strategy game, available in a new improved version (which is by the way offered free of charge to the lucky owners of the original game) at a more than affordable price for all the parties promised!